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Malik (2/6/12)

I actually saw very little of the Super Bowl. I was aiming to watch, but I only saw a few glimpses of the game. Since I had a few friends over, I was instead focused on cooking a non-stop supply of food. I think when given the choice (from what I did see of the game), being in charge of some charcoal cooked burgers is a more enjoyable option than watching a game that looked anything but dramatic until the final 3 minutes of the fourth quarter...of which, I did see the end of the game and it finally started to look interesting at that time.

Of course, I find it hard to think I missed a really amazing game.  I mean the 12th Man should be a Seahawks (or Texas A&M) thing...not something tied in to the Super Bowl this year.  Still, the Giants and Pats both seemed to like the idea.  Should a 12 man penalty happen once in the Super Bowl?  No.  Should it happen, oh, three times?  Hell no.  This is just an example of not being ready for the big game and letting it show in the worst way.

I have to say, of the commercials I saw, nothing really seemed all that epic. Well, not epic enough for a company to throw $3.5 million at NBC to show it. The worst is seeing an ad that was initially released on the internet or even on TV before the game (like the Chevy Camero ad, which I know I saw a couple weeks ago) being released to such an insane price tag. It just makes me sad to know that this is how corporations are spending their money when it would be far better to see some companies just hiring people and battling the recession in a more intelligent way.

Anyway, I'm still trying to play through Infamous so I can move on to Infamous 2. However, I keep finding myself not as dedicated to beating the game as I am to doing everything possible. I'm trying to get all blast shards and all dead drops, and trying to get into areas that just entirely baffle me on how I'm supposed to get access (like the jail, the shipping container storage area, etc.) and trying to perform new stunts to just see how cool they look.

When it's all said and done, however, I am loving the game. I can't believe I missed it when it first came out, or when I got it for free after the PSN collapse last spring. I mean the only true complaint I have with this game is that there is one single mechanic that makes no sense. Cole is healed by electricity, and his grenade is basically a big blast of pure, why do you take damage from your grenades?


Malik (2/10/12)

I have been intrigued by Kingdoms of Amalur for a while now. Yes, the game is out, but I'm still not sold (at least at $60). If the game drops in price, I'll probably go all in...which means when the next round of crazy Steam sales come along, I'll be looking for a discounted KoA price.

As part of this time of intrigue, I played the PC KoA demo a couple nights ago. While playing the demo, you will unlock some neat little bonus items for either KoA (when you buy the full game) or Mass Effect 3 (for when you buy ME3). It's a cool little incentive program for making one fully enjoy a demo. I must say, I did enjoy the demo, despite having to quit before the 45 minute time limit expires...mainly because the 45 minute limit doesn't come into effect until after you play a set amount of the story which took me about 40 minutes to go through.

I decided, since I would buy KoA on the PC and ME3 on the 360 (where my old saves all are located for ME and ME2), I might as well try the KoA demo on the 360. This way I earned a few bonus items for ME3 (if I even need or want to use them...) and can also see if KoA has any special feature to make the 360 version better than the PC version being played with a 360 controller.

Well, after starting the 360 KoA demo, I immediately skipped the cinematics, since I had already seen them on the PC demo. Then, when the game finally started in earnest (after character creation), I realized that the 360 version did have a bonus feature, but not one I would like to experience for more than a minute or two. My character had no head to start. Nothing above the neck. It was funny, but not a helpful feature on a game and not something I'd expect in a demo meant to sell a gamer on the product. So, I tried to toggle my helmet (the game will allow you to not see your helmet in the options, in case you really love the look of your character's face and hair) to see if that fixed the decapitation. Well, it did make a change.

I proceeded to play more of the demo as the woman without a head...but a nice non-head of hair. Yes, my head remained invisible, but I now had a magical wig floating above my neck. Sadly, being on the 360 and not on Steam, I couldn't capture a screen shot of what I would love to post on this to clarify how awesome and glitchy that was.

In the end, my head fully returned when I obtained my sword, so all was well in the end. I also got some extra ME3 items by playing the KoA 360 demo until the timer expired and kicked me out of the demo. So, it was worth playing again.

In the end, however, I cannot see KoA as a $60 game. When I just had a great time with the $60 Skyrim and the $40 Saints Row The Third (got it on sale), $60 is a lot for this game. It looks fun, but it also looks like it may overstay its welcome rather quickly. I cannot see putting in 130 hours (Skyrim play time) or even 45 hours (Saints Row The Third play time) and not getting tired and bored at some point with KoA. However, if the game drops to $40 on Steam, I know I will pick it up in an instant and be quite happy with the purchase. Until then, I still have Infamous and Infamous well as a soon to be released ME3 demo. A demo which will unlock bonus items for the retail version of KoA...and probably ME3, which means I'll have to play that on both PC and 360 like the KoA demo. I then will have ME3 in about a month. I think KoA, with looking like a less than full price title to me, will become a perfect summer game when the usual supply of awesome A+ titles start to run thin.


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